Displaced persons in Juba protest against 32 states

By: Martha David

Internally Displaced Persons [IDPs] in Juba held a peaceful protest yesterday calling for a return to the previous 10 states.

The demonstrators who were holding banners with the writings rejecting 32 states plus Abyei Administrative Area also called for full implementation of the security arrangements before the formation of the Unity Government.

The parties to the agreement have differed on the number of states and their boundaries.

The government’s position is 32 states plus Abyei Administrative area and the main opposition wanted the number reduced to the former 10 states.

The IDPs who spoke to Juba Monitor said the return to 10 states was the only way to avoid eruption of another conflict in the country.

“We are working for the 10 states because the 10 states were existed since the 2011 elections. Now we want to have peace with 10 states,” Gatluak said.

Gatluak stated that the 32 states were created by the government without consulting people on the ground.

“The 32 states is not the voice of the civilians, it is the voice of the government,” he added.

Tiek Chan Nhial, the former deputy chairman of the PoC 3 in Juba who also spoke to Juba Monitor on phone said the demonstrations had taken place in PoCs in Juba, Bentiu and Malakal.

Nhial said that the ten states’ boundaries were clear and there were no disputes over lands. 

“We are calling for the unity of the country through 10 states,” he said.

Nhial called on the government to lift up the state of emergency and implement the security arrangement to allow the IDPs to go back to their homes and live peacefully.

 “We called on both parties and all parties to the agreement to bring the ten states for the unity of this country instead of their personal interest,” Nhial added.

He called on the international community, the UN, Troika, AU, UN Security Council to put pressure on South Sudanese leaders to bring peace.

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